From kids washing up under a too-hot faucet to an accidental tipping of a coffee cup, burns are a potential hazard in every home. In fact, burns, especially scalds from hot water and liquids, are some of the most common childhood accidents.
Babies and young children are especially susceptible — they're curious, small, and have sensitive skin that needs extra protection.
Although some minor burns aren't cause for concern and can be safely treated at home, other more serious burns require medical care. But taking some simple precautions to make your home safer can prevent many burns.
The first step in helping to prevent kids from being burned is to understand these common causes of burns:
- scalds, the No. 1 culprit (from steam, hot bath water, tipped-over coffee cups, hot foods, cooking fluids, etc.)
- contact with flames or hot objects (from the stove, fireplace, curling iron, etc.)
- chemical burns (from swallowing things, like drain cleaner or watch batteries, or spilling chemicals, such as bleach, onto the skin)
- electrical burns (from biting on electrical cords or sticking fingers or objects in electrical outlets, etc.)
- overexposure to the sun
Types of Burns
Burns are often categorized as first-, second-, or third-degree, depending on how badly the skin is damaged. Each of the injuries above can cause any of these three types of burns. But both the type of burn and its cause will determine how the burn is treated.
All burns should be treated quickly to reduce the temperature of the burned area and reduce damage to the skin and underlying tissue (if the burn is severe).
First-degree burns, the mildest of the three, are limited to the top layer of skin:
- Signs and symptoms: These burns produce redness, pain, and minor swelling. The skin is dry without blisters.
- Healing time: Healing time is about 3 to 6 days; the superficial skin layer over the burn may peel off in 1 or 2 days.
Second-degree burns are more serious and involve the skin layers beneath the top layer:
- Signs and symptoms: These burns produce blisters, severe pain, and redness. The blisters sometimes break open and the area is wet looking with a bright pink to cherry red color.
- Healing time: Healing time varies depending on the severity of the burn. It can take up to 3 weeks or more.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
© 1995-2009 The Nemours Foundation. All rights reserved.
Add your own comment
Today on Education.com
WORKBOOKSMay Workbooks are Here!
WE'VE GOT A GREAT ROUND-UP OF ACTIVITIES PERFECT FOR LONG WEEKENDS, STAYCATIONS, VACATIONS ... OR JUST SOME GOOD OLD-FASHIONED FUN!Get Outside! 10 Playful Activities
- Kindergarten Sight Words List
- The Five Warning Signs of Asperger's Syndrome
- What Makes a School Effective?
- Child Development Theories
- Why is Play Important? Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development, Creative Development
- 10 Fun Activities for Children with Autism
- Test Problems: Seven Reasons Why Standardized Tests Are Not Working
- Bullying in Schools
- A Teacher's Guide to Differentiating Instruction
- First Grade Sight Words List